View Adopted: 2020.03.10
The author is a national of Tajikistan who claims that the state party has violated her son’s rights under article 6 and 7 and her own rights under article 7 of the Covenant.
The author states that on 27 June 2009 the author’s son was stopped by a police patrol who demanded to know the contents of his bag. After he refused, a fight ensued between him and police officers. The author was informed by the police the following day that her son had been drunk and died because of vomiting in custody. Once her son’s body was brought home, she noted several external bodily injuries. Prior to his apprehension, the author’s son did not have a medical history or bodily injuries. The author therein claims that her son died as a result of ill-treatment and torture inflicted by the police.
The author also notes that despite numerous attempts on her part the State Party has failed to conduct an impartial and thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding her son’s death.
The Committee concluded that, in the light of the State Party’s inability to rely on an adequate and conclusive investigation to rebut the author’s allegations that her son died as a result of the torture he suffered while in custody, and in the absence of further information, that there had been a violation of article 6(1) and 7 of the Covenant with regards to the rights of the author’s son.
The Committee also found that the investigation into the death of the son cannot be considered as having been carried out promptly and effectively and that it was suspended several times. The Committee also noted the author’s uncontested claim that she had not been provided with the documents. It recalled that when a case file is inaccessible to the victim’s close relatives the investigation itself cannot be regarded as an effective one. On this basis, the Committee concluded that the State party has not provided an effective remedy for the violations of the rights of the author’s son under articles 6(1) and 7.
The Committee also observed that the State party authorities have not indicted, prosecuted or brought anyone to justice in connection with this death in custody, which occurred in highly suspicious circumstances. With reference to the month’s anguish and mental stress, the Committee was therein of the view that the facts presented before it amount to inhuman treatment of the author, in violation of article 7.